Will airline traffic double and will our faces replace passports by 2040?
Allianz Partners’ new travel futurology report, “The World in 2040” aims to find out. The goal of the report is to predict major trends that will influence travel and lifestyle choices in the coming decades and will help the industry prepare for the travel-related needs of its customers in the future.
The world is going to travel faster, easier and in a more ecologically sustainable way than ever before by 2040 finds the report that was authored by internationally renowned futurologist, Ray Hammond.
“The face of travel as we know it will change dramatically over the next 20 years,” predicted Hammond.
“Airline passenger numbers are forecast to double by that time and the travel industry is coming under increasing pressure from travelers for faster and more efficient travel experiences,” he noted. “By 2040, personal software assistants will be sufficiently intelligent to help travelers book their trips online, and they will be able to cope with all the complexities of multi-destination travel planning in order to meet the needs of the traveler.”
The desires of travelers will also transform.
“Travel will also become more about rejuvenation, adventure, fulfillment and learning new skills rather than just ticking off places to see from a list,” said Hammond.
The report will help the travel industry foresee and accommodate coming changes.
Joe Mason, chief marketing officer at Allianz Partners, Travel Line of Business, said: “The ‘Future Travel Experience’ report allows Allianz Partners to foresee the trends and changes in travel so we can work towards redefining travel insurance.”
“This includes the delivery of new innovative products and services, while also building more value for our partners and customers,” added Mason. “We are already shifting our focus from travel insurance to travel protection as we move from a reactive customer service approach to a more proactive care approach. Our customers will benefit from this shift through more responsive claims processes, more sophisticated mobile solutions, and a greater sense of safety, security, and overall well-being when Allianz Partners accompanies them throughout their journeys.”
Travel may transform but some things will not change.
“Though some aspects of travel should be much less stressful by the year 2040, there will still be some familiar risks for travelers to contend with, along with some new ones,” Mason noted. “Unforeseen trip cancelations, delays and emergencies abroad will continue to happen, meaning that travelers will continue to need travel protection and assistance services to travel with peace of mind.”
The research found several key trends that will shape the future of travel:
Virtual and Augmented Reality
Virtual reality will give travelers a sneak peek at what’s to come.
Allianz’s research shows that multi-sensory virtual reality technology will allow armchair travel planners to ‘step into’ virtual hotel rooms, visit street carnivals, explore museums or walk into restaurants, from the comfort of their own living room.
The trend should fuel more real-life travel, rather than hinder it, Allianz finds.
Instant Check-In at the Hotel
Facial pattern recognition systems are becoming more prevalent already as technology advances. The report predicts that within 20 years, computer systems that can reliably identify your face will be in widespread use to check-in seamlessly.
Hotel Software Assistants
With facial recognition comes more automation. “The World in 2040” report found that luxury hotels will greet their guests with a human face but business and budget properties are likely to use automated check-in and guidance to rooms provided by software assistants.
Trains will also become more popular and more efficient in many parts of the world.
Cross-border train journeys will be smoother and much improved in many parts of the world. Computer networks and the ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) will manage national and international rail networks, allowing trains to run faster and closer together. Train speed will also increase on most rail networks, with most high-speed trains running at speeds above 125 mph, says the report.
On-Site 3-D Clothes Printing
Luggage-free travel could be possible in the future with 3-D printing advancements.
It will be possible to send your measurements to your hotel in advance of your arrival and heavy or bulky clothes (e.g. raincoats or shoes) will have been printed out to await your arrival, reducing the amount of luggage the tourist of 2040 will have to transport, Allianz reports.
Cruises may be one of the greenest ways to travel in the future.
Cruise ships will be far more environmentally friendly than today’s giant ocean liners,” the report finds. Vessels will be powered by Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), a light fossil fuel with almost no greenhouse gas emissions.
Space as a Regular Destination
Plan to vacation out of this world in the future. Space tourism will be taking off in 2040 and the moon will become a popular destination for many.